Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has authorized the extension of a nationwide lockdown for four weeks as the country continues its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The latest extension is the third for the second phase of an eased lockdown meant to curb the spread of the disease in the West African country.

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Local Channels TV announced on Thursday evening that the move was announced by Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, at a Task Force briefing in Abuja.

Nigeria is one of the worst affected countries in Africa by the COVID-19 pandemic, having reported 44,890 infections and 927 deaths.

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The number of cases in the West African country is the third-highest on the continent, shadowed only by South Africa and Egypt.